Review: Rai #6
A brand-new arc of the critically-acclaimed series starts in Rai #6! Rai and Raijin are drafted into the positronic Roman legions to face a savage threat.
I absolutely loved the first issue of the current volume of Rai. I was quite taken with the second issue, as well as the third and fourth. After how much I loved Fallen World, I wasn’t expecting to enjoy Rai as much as I have. Every issue has been near perfection. The theme of the series is the inclusion of technology in our lives and the potential future we face. One could argue I’m reading too much into the comics, but I’d like to counter that. After all, what a reader takes from a book can be different depending on their perspectives.
The core concept of the series is that Rai and his younger brother figure who is also an older model android, Raijin, are searching for Offspirng. Not the band, but rather pieces of artificially intelligent code that when returned to Bloodfather will make him nigh unstoppable. Each issue centers around Rai and Raijin and their search for more Offspring, giving the series it’s overarching plot line while allowing Dan Abnett to have each issue effectively tell a whole story or the first half of a two parter.
Rai #6 is one of those comics that deals with the Greater Good; aiming to win the war at the expense of the smaller battles. Abnett explores this concept in a microcosm as Rai and Raijin intervene in an ongoing struggle between two warring factions. There’s a tenseness to the writing as we discover how Rai plans to react the the situation, his singleminded dedication to his goal coming across as selfishness and indifference, which emphasizes Abnett’s point; you can save the world, but don’t forget who your saving it for.
Juan Jose Ryp‘s artwork pulls me right back to Valiant’s Roman era series Britannia (probably because he also drew that), which only helps to emphasize the interconnectedness of the Valiant universe (even if it was unintentional). Once again coloured by Andrew Dalhouse, the visual presentation of the book is near flawless.
Rai was THE book I was waiting for once comics began shipping again, and I can happily say I wasn’t disappointed in Rai #6 after the long wait. Abnett’s Rai is easily the one of the very best things being published right now. If you’re not reading it, why not?
Story: Dan Abnett Artist: Juan Jose Ryp
Colorist: Andrew Dalhouse Letter: Dave Sharpe
Story: 9.8 Art: 9.8 Overall: 9.8 Recommendation: Buy
Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review